Businesses and residences in the waterfront area of Eureka were evacuated Tues., Sept. 17 as the Humboldt County Bomb Squad and Eureka Police worked to remove "projectiles" that were uncovered at a construction site and identified as Navy artillery shells, according to a Eureka Police Department press release.
The artillery shells were safely transported to Samoa Beach and destroyed. At this time it is unknown how the shells came to be at the construction site. The full Eureka Police Department press release appears below.
EPD Press Release, dated Sept., 17, 2013:
On 9/17/13, at about 8:00 AM, Eureka Police Department officers were dispatched to a construction site along the waterfront between H and I Streets after construction workers reported uncovering two World War II era artillery shells. The shells were located in separate dirt piles within the construction site.
After confirming the presence of possible undetonated artillery shells, officers established a wide perimeter around the construction site and evacuated neighboring businesses and residences as a precautionary measure. Assistance from the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad was also requested.
The Bomb Squad subsequently removed the projectiles and transported them in a “single vent explosives transportation trailer” to the Samoa beach where they were destroyed. EPD provided a police escort for the explosives trailer’s transportation to the beach. The evacuations were lifted at approximately 11:45 AM.
The first projectile was determined to be empty and inert. The second projectile was filled with an undermined substance and it is unknown whether or not that projectile was “live.” The Bomb Squad identified the projectiles as being Navy artillery.
The origin of the artillery shells and how they came to be buried at the construction site is unknown at this time.